Dr. Arne Schuldt
CEO and Researcher

Towards Fourth-Party Logistics Providers:
A Business Model for Cloud-Based Autonomous Logistics

A. Schuldt, K. A. Hribernik, J. D. Gehrke, K.-D. Thoben, and O. Herzog

Centre for Computing and Communication Technologies (TZI)
University of Bremen, Am Fallturm 1, D-28359 Bremen

BIBA - Bremer Institut f├╝r Produktion und Logistik GmbH
University of Bremen, Hochschulring 20, D-28359 Bremen

Abstract

Cloud computing denotes a paradigm shift in computing that enables a flexible allocation of hardware and software resources on demand. Therewith, it is particularly appealing for applications with a high degree of computational complexity and dynamics. This paper identifies logistics planning and control as a promising application for clouds. However, two prerequisites must be met for cloud-based logistics control. Firstly, the platform-as-a-service layer must provide a synchronisation of the physically distributed real-world material flows and the data flows in the cloud. Secondly, appropriate and scalable control software must be implemented on the software-as-a-service layer. Apart from outlining the technical foundations, this paper describes how both steps enable a business model that is usually referred to as fourth-party logistics.

Reference

Schuldt, A., Hribernik, K. A., Gehrke, J. D., Thoben, K.-D., and Herzog, O. (2011). Towards Fourth-Party Logistics Providers: A Business Model for Cloud-Based Autonomous Logistics. In Leymann, F., Ivanov, I., van Sinderen, M., and Shishkov, B. (eds.): 1st International Conference on Cloud Computing and Services Science (CLOSER 2011). Noordwijkerhout, The Netherlands, May 7-9, 2011. INSTICC Press, pp. 445-451.

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